The holiday giant, which employs about 1,000 people at its offices in Westpoint, Lynch Wood, has confirmed discussions are underway with Chinese conglomerate Fosun International over the potential sale of its tour operator business.
But struggling Thomas Cook, which is now embroiled in a tough battle to return to profitability, said there was no guarantee the talks would lead to a formal offer that could lead to the break up of the 178-year-old company.
Thomas Cook's confirmation of the Club Med owner's approach comes after Sky News' report over the weekend that Fosun was in secret talks to buy the United Kingdom tour operator.
However, the company has sought to reassure holidaymakers, telling customers last month that it was "business as usual".
Thomas Cook, which issued three profit warnings previous year, said it was talking to the Hong Kong-based companyas it suffered dwindling demand for its package holidays and high levels of debt.
It said the company board will "consider any potential offer" for the tour operator arm, as it looks to maximise value for shareholders.
The introduction of own-brand resorts in the world's second-largest economy has also opened up the domestic Chinese market to Thomas Cook.
It issued two profits warnings a year ago, put its airline business up for sale and announced the closure of 21 stores, and recently warned it may have breached its own borrowing limits.
Any purchase would not include Thomas Cook's profitable airline business, which it was also said to be hawking around, as airlines must be majority owned by European Union nationals in order to operate intra-EU flights.
The travel company has been looking to offload it airline division since the start of this year, confirming a deadline for bids last month.
Thomas Cook is understood to have received between seven and ten preliminary offers for some or all of the company, including one from an undisclosed private equity firm.
Shares in Thomas Cook have plunged by more than 80 per cent over the past 12 months.